Building the Perfect Golfer Piece by Piece

Mike DudurichContributor IOctober 3, 2012

Building the Perfect Golfer Piece by Piece

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    Step into Dr. Mike’s laboratory and observe a science project much more fun than anything you did in your 10th grade science class. This assignment: put together the perfect golfer, piece-by-piece.

    We’re going to take every important aspect that the perfect golfer would have from the greatest players in the game.

    Where to start? Part Sam Snead, Arnold Palmer, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson?

    Well, follow along.

Tiger Woods Made Golf Physical

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    To put an end to the discussion on this subject, golfers are athletes and there’s been no better athlete in the history of the game than Tiger Woods.

    The 14-time major champion revolutionized the game in a number of ways, including reintroducing golf professionals to the gymnasium and regular workouts.

    He set the bar high for generations to come.

Short Game: The Amazing Seve

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    The first impression here was type in the name of Phil Mickelson. The big lefthander is the modern-era miracle worker around the greens, executing those high flop shots like no one else.

    But history says that the late Seve Ballesteros was unparalleled when it came to the short game.

    Come on, the man could hit absolutely marvelous sand shots from a greenside bunker with a 3-iron.

Scrambling: Nick Price Always Had an Answer

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    When Nick Price was at his best, he was an elite player.

    When he didn’t drive it or hit his irons as well as he would like, he could always count on his scrambling ability.

    There were very few places from which Price couldn’t make par.

Long Irons: The Golden Bear Excelled

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    When Jack Nicklaus came onto the PGA tour in the early 1960s, he was the antithesis of the game’s most popular player at the time, Arnold Palmer.

    "The King" played the game with a low, boring trajectory while Nicklaus’ game was based on altitude.

    Nobody then or since has hit long irons as high and as straight as Nicklaus.

Driving: The Shark Hit It Long and Straight

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    Tiger Woods introduced the world of golf to ridiculous length off the tee, but the man who used to be No. 1 wasn’t always the most accurate off the tee.

    Greg Norman gets the nod on the tee.

    "The Great White Shark" took a chunk out of the opposition every week with drives that were long, straight and hit very hard.

Putting: Tiger Woods Had No Peer on the Green

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    As good as the rest of his game was when Tiger was at its best, his putting during that stretch may have been the best the game has ever seen.

    He was automatic from 10 feet and in, and you could count on one from nowhere going in sometime during the round.

Ball Striking: Ben Hogan Was Always on the Money

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    More players have tried to reproduce the sweet swing of Ben Hogan than any other in the game.

    He rarely mishit a shot and will always be regarded as one of the greats of the game.

    Imagine what his status might be if he had not been in for two years of military service in World War II and that near-fatal automobile accident that required nine months of rehabilitation?

Bunker Play: Gary Player Was the Sultan of the Sand

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    Gary Player was by far the most the most remarkable bunker player of his era, and that was saying something.

    His greatness has not been diminished over the years and there’s a great story that goes with his sand prowess.

    “I was practicing in a bunker down in Texas and this good old boy with a big hat stopped to watch. The first shot he saw me hit went in the hole. He said, ‘You got 50 bucks if you knock the next one in.’ I holed the next one."

    "Then he says, ‘You got $100 if you hole the next one.’ In it went for three in a row. As he peeled off the bills he said, ‘Boy, I've never seen anyone so lucky in my life.’ And I shot back, 'Well, the harder I practice, the luckier I get.'"